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Don’t Get Burned: Steps to Take Before Accepting a Job Offer

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Businesswomen Shaking HandsIf you could do it all over again, would you accept the offer for your last job? For many managers and executives, the answer is no. The problem is many high-level employees don’t do their due diligence in exploring the company’s core values, culture, and opportunities before saying yes to a position. Hindsight is 20/20, but to ensure your next C-level job is one you never regret taking, these two steps before accepting a job offer can help.

Ask around about leadership

Call people who are in the know. Track down prior direct reports and even prior board members. You can also try to find your predecessor. His or her opinion might have to be weighed very carefully, depending on the circumstances, but the person who left the job may be able to shed light on what awaits you. The basic idea is to do research on your potential new boss or bosses. Additionally, check out Glassdoor and other Internet review sites. Search trade and industry publications for articles by or about the people you might be working with. See if you can find out what the turnover is by area, especially sales, leadership positions, and IT.

Go beyond the interview

Interview like a consultant! By asking the right people the right questions, you’ll position yourself head and shoulders above the competition. Very few candidates are this thorough, and high-performing organizations truly appreciate potential employees who know what it means to do their homework. If talking with your peers isn’t already part of the interview itinerary, ask if that’s a possibility so you can get a true sense of your team. In addition to meeting with your boss, see if you can score an interview with the boss’s boss. This will give you valuable insight into a company’s vision. Finally, try to meet with internal customers. If you’re in marketing, you need to interview some of the people on the sales team. If you’re in sales, interview some folks in marketing. If your role is in HR or finance, meet with the heads of key departments.

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